How To Research and Scrapbook Your Family Tree and History

by pkmcr

Want to research your Family Tree or Genealogy and not sure where to start. This page is one of a number which looks at the basics of Family Tree Research

I have been fascinated by Genealogy or Family Tree research for many years now and it's a hobby or passion that continues to this day.

I am probably very fortunate that a lot of my Family History has been researched by people over the years because of some of the connections my ancestors had. That includes one of them Myles Standish being on The Mayflower and founding Duxbury in in Plymouth County, Massachusetts. However, one of the things that people who know I am interested in Genealogy often ask if how to get started when it comes to researching your family tree.

This page is therefore intended to help you get started and show you how to start exploring your own Family History.

If you’ve ever wondered why you have red hair, or where you get your green eyes from when the rest of your family has brown, or maybe you’re curious about your peculiar last name then taking a look into your family’s history might give you the answers you’ve been looking for.

Dig into your past and see what you can uncover about your family tree and maybe you’ll learn to finally appreciate and embrace your striking features and family name. Below are five steps on how to research your family tree.

Decide on What or Who You’re Going to Research

There are a lot of different paths you can take when it comes to researching your family tree.

For example, some people choose to research an individual who may have played a very significant role in their family’s history.

Others decide to research a group of people that falls under a family name, or on your maternal side, or paternal side. So first decide on the specifics of your research and go from there.

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Formulating Your Family Tree Research Plan

Ask Questions and Set-Up Interviews with Your Family

This is when you put your researching skills to the test. Use your information wisely and exhaust all possible resources.

This can include genealogy software, family history websites, census and voting records, libraries, public records, old newspapers, obituaries and many more; use both online and offline means for a more extensive collection of data.

One thing I often recommend to friends when they have got a little way into their genealogy research is to take advantage of the free trials that sites like offer. One thing to be aware of is that if you find it isn't for you then make sure to cancel your subscription before the free trial ends. Do take a look at free trial to see if it is worth it for you or if you are in the UK the free trial.

Use A Family Tree Chart To Get Started With

It’s time to start piecing the puzzle of your family tree together. You can start by grouping and categorizing family members and placing them properly onto your family tree.

Print out a family tree chart from online or buy one at a craft store if you don’t already have one. Before you make any permanent arrangements with your glue double check everything and make sure it’s correct.

So just in case you made a mistake, changes can still be done without causing damage to your family tree. There are some great examples of family tree charts which you can print off at Printable Free Family Tree Charts.

What Will You Need To Make Your Family Tree Scrapbook?

If you want to make a family tree scrapbook, then you are going to need a lot of different supplies. Luckily these are pretty easy to find if you have a craft store that is nearby or even better you can shop online.

Shopping online for scrapbooking supplies you are going to discover a ton of different things that you need (as well as many that you don't need but will want!).

Don't get overwhelmed by the task that lies ahead, just have fun with this craft project and remember that it's something you're supposed to enjoy.

1. Scrapbook

There are quite a few different scrapbooks you can choose from to put your family tree inside of! They come in all different sizes, so make sure you get a large one if you have a big family. Also keep in mind that you will want to add pages to this book, so it should be expandable. There are tons of designs and colors available, including some that are specifically for family trees.

2. Cardstock

Cardstock for scrapbooks is really just a thick type of paper that is made with different prints and colors. This is what you will put your pictures and embellishments onto, making it a pretty important piece of paper! There are a lot of different prints and colors you can get, so mix things up. There are even some that are made specifically for family trees, so make sure to look out for these (although you may have to search around or buy them online).

Get a lot of different pieces of paper so you have enough to cover your entire album. You can also cut out different shapes with various pieces of paper and glue them onto different pages. This can add a unique touch that will ensure your family loves this book!

3. Stickers

Stickers are important for all scrapbooks, but especially for family tree scrapbooks. These will allow you to write out the names of different family members as well as birth and death dates. Stickers come in all sorts of different shapes and sizes, so you should have a lot of different options to work with. There are even 3D stickers you can use that will pop out from the page!

Organization is a big part of keeping your family tree aligned and easy to read. Make sure you utilize blank stickers so you have plenty of places to write out the information for different family members. Also remember that some cardstock papers may have places for you to write out names, so you may not always need stickers for all of your pages.

4. Extra Supplies

In order to put your book together you are going to need some extra supplies. You can pick and choose those that you think you are going to need. Some supplies may be suitable for your book while others may not be. Some of the most important include:

- Glue stick
- Scissors
- Pictures
- Embellishments
- Tape
- Paper frames
- Chipboard shapes
- Glitter

Consider A Genealogy Scrapbook Kit

I must admit I wish something like this Genealogy Scrapbook Kit had been available many years ago when I first started my genealogy research!

While many old documents are hard to come by, it’s still very possible to obtain them especially if your family or relatives are the ones who have them neatly tucked away in the basement or attic of their homes.

Be sure to include things like birth certificates, marriage certificates, voting records, military records, immigrant lists and the like. You can also collect old photos of featured family members for a more visually appealing display.

A genealogy scrapbook kit is perfect for collecting and presenting all these documents and photographs.

Creating Your Family Tree Scrapbook

Start out by making a rough draft of how you want your family tree scrapbook to look. Do you want individual pages for each family member? Or do you want to have one page for each family? You could also start out with a tree of each member and branch that into each individual and their relationship. Make your book easy to read so even young children can understand who each person is and how they are related.

After you've done all of the hard work, it will be time to get started! Choose the layout you would like for each of the pages. This is something that you can get a lot of help with if you look around online for inspiration. Organize your pictures and cut them out so that they are the right size for the page they are going to go on. Pictures to include:

- Graduations
- Births
- Engagements
- Marriages
- Reunions

After you have the pictures and layouts decided, then you will be able to start gluing them down. Put everything in place on each of your pages the way you want it to be permanently glued or taped down. Always make sure you glue the pictures on last, as doing this first could result in having a page that you aren't satisfied with. After the pictures are down you can start with the stickers and other embellishments or decorations.

Go page by page and don't get overwhelmed! You will be able to share this with your friends and family members for many years to come. You can even pass it down so that other family members carry on with it well into the future. A lot of memories can be saved with a beautiful family tree book that is made by many members of your very own family.

More Ideas for Scrapbooking Your Family Tree

Updated: 12/04/2016, pkmcr
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CruiseReady on 08/25/2015

This is a page I will need to come back to some day when I resume looking into the history of our family

Veronica on 08/24/2015

I have been doing genealogy for over 30 years and do it for other people too.

I love this idea of a scrapbook thank you. I don't have one for some reason ;I never thought of it but will start one now to pass down. TY . I do some family history every day.

I dislike how Ancestry allows anyone to download my photos to their own trees even if they have no connection. I have even complained; if they are connected I have no objection . A lady recently contacted me and said she was related because she had a name in common. J*ne H*ckett. I pointed out that as her Jane Hackett was born in Bolton Lancashire and my Jane Hackett was born Jane Shorrocks ( not Hackett ) and was born in Chorlton on Medlock Lancashire, they weren't the same person but she wouldn't have it at all. Kept mailing me saying they were the same, even though my Jane was only Hackett by marriage and hers as Hackett by birth. I am afraid that Ancestry is full of silly people so I tend to use another site.

pkmcr on 08/24/2015

@blackspanielgallery - thanks for sharing some of your genealogy - sounds like an opportunity for a set of scrapbooks - much like my own Family History :-)

blackspanielgallery on 08/23/2015

I am afraid my family tree is too large for a scrapbook. I got fortunate in two lines went to England, where records were better than other places, and managed to get back into the 400s in one branch using other people's trees as a basis. It turns out once you get into a significant line, and my significant line goes to Charlemagne, much work has been done. While going through England I can see the progression of titles, from Sir and Lady about 500 years back to Duke, then to Emperor of the Western Holy Roman Empire. Unfortunately, another branch is very short and ends in an orphanage. A marriage record indicates the person did not know her mother's name, and only the surname of her father. Yes, it is addictive. And I fully realize I do not get even one castle from this.

AngelaJohnson on 08/23/2015

My aunt has done a lot of research on our family tree, which I appreciate, but i'm more interested in family stories. I've got stories from my grandpa, my mother, and three of my aunts, but I wish I had become interested and asked questions before my other older relatives died.

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